An Act of Genocide: Canada's Coerced Sterilization of First Nations Women
“The coercive sterilization of Indigenous women in Canada is genocide proper,” Dr. Karen Stote, professor at Wilfrid Laurier University and author of An Act of Genocide: Colonialism and Sterilization of Aboriginal Women, asserted in a statement to Intercontinental Cry (IC) . Her distinction alludes to the alternative phrasing of ‘cultural genocide’, a semantic preferred by judges, policy makers and other Canadian officials when referencing the plight of Canada’s First Nations.
Stote elaborated that, “…imposing measures to prevent births within a group, when done to undermine the ability of a group to continue to exist, is an act of genocide”. The crime is fully realized “…when coercive sterilization is understood within the larger context of colonialism, as one of many policies/practices imposed on Indigenous peoples that allows the increasing encroachment of Indigenous lands and the reduction of the number of those to whom the federal government has obligations”.